Vascular screenings are offered regularly at Bay Area Medical Center (BAMC).
There are some conditions that are seldom part of a screening program. These conditions, if undetected, can result in a stroke, a ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm or peripheral arterial disease (PAD).
- Strokes are the 3rd leading cause of death and the leading cause of long-term disability. Over 700,000 people have strokes each year. In half of those cases the patient didn't show any symptoms, and 1 in 3 were caused by carotid artery blockage.
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm, is the 10th-leading cause of death in the U.S. It is estimated that over 1 million people live with an undiagnosed abdominal aneurysm and that 95 percent of those could be successfully treated if they are detected early.
- Peripheral arterial disease, is a common condition affecting nearly 12 million Americans. It not only affects quality of life by making walking painful but indicates a 4 to 5 times greater chance for heart disease.
What do these all have in common?
They strike without warning, they have serious or deadly consequences, and your risk for each can be identified early through simple and affordable screening tests.
In an effort to make it easier for you to know your condition, BAMC now offers a package of 3 screening tests:
The aorta is the largest artery in the body, supplying blood to the abdomen, pelvis and legs. An enlargement caused by a weakening of the wall of the abdominal artery is called an aneurysm. There are often few or no symptoms of this condition, and if it ruptures it can be fatal. An ultrasound technician moves a transducer across the abdomen to create a clear picture of this aorta.
Ankle-brachial index (ABI)
Arteries in the legs can become blocked, resulting in decreased blood flow. This can limit the ability to walk as well as cause other complications. The ABI screening is performed by placing several blood pressure cuffs on the ankles and arms.
Carotid artery ultrasound
The carotid arteries are the main blood supply lines to the brain. If a blockage occurs in these arteries, it can significantly increase the risk of stroke. Testing is performed by an ultrasound tech. An ultrasound transducer is moved along the neck to create a clear picture of the inside of the arteries.
These scheduled screenings are all done in the BAMC Screening Clinic in the hospital. The tests are performed by licensed ultrasound technologists following physician-established protocols. Each takes about a half hour, is painless, and requires you to do no more than remove your shoes and socks.
You will receive your test results immediately, and a copy will also be sent to your doctor. One of our screening navigators will provide you with health information materials and can discuss with you what you should do next. If a problem is identified through the screening, you and your doctor can take action to further diagnose and treat your condition.
Who should consider these screenings?
If you have any of these risk factors, you may be at risk for a stroke or peripheral arterial disease and may want to consider these screenings:
- Over 50 years old.
- Immediate family history of stroke or heart disease.
- High cholesterol.
- High blood pressure.
- Overweight or obese.
Schedule a screening
These tests do not require a doctor's referral. Convenient appointments may be made directly with the hospital scheduling department by calling 715.732.8282 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The cost of all 3 screenings is only $75. Schedule your screening today.